*Determined to Be together*


Pan I was at Capsule Corp. the day Trunks called a family meeting to tell his family his good news.
        He was moving out of the house. Here’s how it went…. Me and Bra were sitting in her room, talking about Jimmy and how he embarrassed Marie today at school, when Trunks came home from Capsule Corp. (He’s president.) I think the entire neighborhood heard him when he yelled, “FAMILY MEETING!
BRA!! Get your ass down here!” Bra looked surprised. She never really heard him cuss at her. We both ran
down (I am practically family). The living room was already full of family. I was ready to leave, but Bulma just waved me back in. I sat down on the loveseat next to Bra, scanning the room. I noticed Vegeta was sitting on the only chair, and Bulma was sitting on the couch, alone. I mean, I know Vegeta can be cold, but really… his wife shouldn’t be lonely. Anyways, I am getting off the subject, Trunks. Trunks was standing up, still in his suit. His hair was no longer slicked back; it looked like it had been pulled out of the placement cause he had run his hands through it in agitation. He looked kind of nervous about telling us whatever he had called us for, and to tell the truth, I was just as nervous.
Then it all just kind of tumbled out of him.
“I’m moving out.”
Just like that. He dropped the bomb on me… us. Like Fat Boy on Hiroshima. BAM! BOOM! Everyone had a shocked look on his or her face, except for Vegeta. He just looked on with a proud smirk.
“Bout time, boy. Should have moved out a while go.” Vegeta said. Bulma glared at him.
“Why? Where are you going to live? How are you going to feed yourself? Who are you going to talk to?” Bulma barraged him with questions. I kinda felt sorry for Trunks… but I was a lot angrier with him. I never get
to see him unless I sleep over with Bra. Sure, we are friends and all, but he always liked Goten better when it came to hanging around. Trunks answered the questions (I didn’t really hear the answers), then stalked off to his room. I followed him, worried about the look on his face.  had known him all my life, and usually I could read his expressions. This time I couldn’t.
In his room, he had a huge cardboard box sitting on top of his bed, and he was throwing clothes into it. Then he began throwing in harder things, and when he missed, they caused dents on the walls. He didn’t even notice.
“Trunks? What’s wrong?” I asked, dodging a few stray hardcovers.
        “Not a thing. Just leave me alone.” He answered, still throwing stuff into the box.
        “Well then, at least let me help.”
        “Don’t bother. Especially when you do not agree with my decision.”
        “Your right. I don’t agree with it,” I said, catching one of his daggers that would have cut my head open,
“ But I respect it.”
        He looked at me then. Once again, part of his expression was unreadable, but I read part of it…. And that part begged for some understanding. I smiled at him and offered what I could.
“Wanna tell me about it?” I asked, smiling.
“Not right now… alright?  I am trying to figure things out for myself.”
        “Alright. How was your day?”
        “Ok… I guess. I only had three major accidents instead of the usual five…”
        “Like what?”
        “Well, I lost the budgets, nearly killed the nerd who came in to fix my mistake…..that kind of thing. Today I did that, AND I roasted a client.”
        “How did you do that?”
        “The dude came in, without an announcement, and punched me in the back… hard. I used my burning attack before the guy knew what hit him. My secretary came in, did a double take, then dragged the body out.”
“Poor Trunks-chan. Going to survive?”
“I think so… but only if you put that dagger down.” He said, glancing at the dagger I was still holding. I blushed, then put it down.
“If you hadn’t thrown it at me, I wouldn’t have touched it.” I muttered to myself, but Trunks with his damn sensitive saiyin-jin hearing heard me.
“I threw it at you? I am really sorry. I didn’t mean to. Did it hurt ya?” he asked, concerned sounding.
“Course it didn’t hurt me.” I answered scoffingly.
“Did you mention to your mother that you fried a client?”
“Nope. And I don’t plan too, either. She would have my hide.” Pan laughed at his comment, and started tossing things from his dresser into the box.
“How are you going to fit everything in that box? Don’t you have capsules for that?” I asked.
“Yeah, but I used them so that I wouldn’t have to move the furniture I bought.” He answered, smiling.
“You planned this way in advance? Cool. Although you might have given your parents some warning.” Not to mention me.
“I know, but I wasn’t sure I would go through with it. Now I am.” He shrugged his huge shoulders and started throwing some more stuff into the box. I was surprised that he never broke the box.
“Okay. Tell me about your new house.”
“Well, it is kinda small, but cozy, ya know. It has a front porch with a swing, and shutters on the windows. I just bought some nice simple essential furniture. Then I stocked up the kitchen for a week…. And that is about it.’
“Are you taking your bed?”
“I am going to put it and my dresser into a capsule before I leave.”
Bra was standing in the doorway, obviously thinking about something, when I got up to leave. I hadn’t realized I was late to dinner… well, my stomach did, but this was the last time I was going to see Trunks, so it gave me a break.
“I gotta get home Trunks. Later.”
“Alright… later.” He answered back, only looking up once. I went home. I barley listened as my mom lectured me about being on time.
After eating dinner, I went up to my room. I picked up my usual pajamas, a pair of sweatpants and a tank top, and walked into the bathroom. I took a quick shower, then brushed my teeth and my hair, getting ready for bed. After I finished all that, I just kind of lay down on my bed, thinking about him. Eventually the idea popped into my mind that I could convince him to hire me as a live in maid or whatever. I got so excited about it that I couldn’t sleep at all. I went downstairs and sat at the table, drinking a hot cocoa that I didn’t make. I was so busy thinking that I didn’t notice the ki standing next to the fridge.

Chap. 2

Trunks I was raiding the Son’s kitchen, like I usually did when I was agitated. I mean, I was moving out to get away from Pan. She would never love me, and I was getting tortured having to look at her every time she hung out with Bra. She hardly ever talked to me anymore, and when she did, it was like she was another little sister.
        So when she sat down at her kitchen table and started drinking the cocoa I made, I had a heart attack. Quickly I controlled my heart, and decided to be flippant.
        “I could have made you some.” Pan looked kind of startled when I talked, so I guessed she didn’t know I
was there. She was in my tank top and sweatpants. I wondered why she was wearing them… and then my mind started wandering to how good she looked in them.
“I’m sorry. Was this one yours?” the angel spoke, kind of bouncing me out of my reverie.
        “Just kind of. Don’t worry… I will make another one.”
“So you always borrow a guys clothes?”
        “You’re wearing my clothes.”
        “I found them in my hamper. They can’t be yours.”
        “Sure they can. I left them here when I spent the night with Goten.” I started pouring some milk into a mug.
        “You are probably right. I was wondering why they were so big on me anyways. Do you want them back?”
        {Only if you change right now in front of me.}
        “No. Keep ‘em. They look better on you anyways.” I said as I gave her a teasing grin. {Did I just see her blush?}
        “Thanks.. I think. You might not want to overflow that cup.”
        I had been watching her for so long that I had forgotten about the fact that I was pouring milk. It was already getting high enough to start spilling.
        “Whoa! That wasn’t supposed to happen!” I said, scrambling to catch the jug, clean the mess, and stop pouring all at the same time. I looked kinda sheepishly at Pan, who was obviously trying not to laugh. She
got up and helped me by taking the jug, then put it into the fridge.
        I started cleaning up the spilled milk using a towel, avoiding watching Pan help me. {I wish she would help me into…} I didn’t bother ending that thought. {She doesn’t think of me like that}
        I picked up the mug and cleaned the counter under it. I was about to set it
down, when Pan grabbed my arm. I blushed when she touched me, but she didn’t notice. She grabbed the towel and cleaned the bottom of the cup, then let me set it down.
        “Not much of a housekeeper, are ya, Trunks?”
        “And you’re too much of one, Pan-chan.” I answered, sticking my tongue out at her in a very unprincley manner. She just stuck her tongue out at me back and laughed.
        “We haven’t done that in a long time.” Pan said, smiling.
        “I think I should be glad of that…,” I said, and Pan just laughed again.
        “Why are you here?” she asked.
        “I couldn’t sleep. I always come here for that. No machines to scare me to death.”
        “Why are you here?”
        “This is my kitchen!”
        “Whatever. Couldn’t sleep?”
        “Cool. So tell me about your latest boyfriend.” I asked, hoping she couldn’t hear my jealousy.
        “I don’t have one. I haven’t for a while.”
        “How come?”
        “I like someone, but he doesn’t like me the right way back. And I just don’t want anyone else.”
        “I know how that feels. Big time.”
        Then we both kind of fell into a silence for a while, and sipped our cocoa.
        “You don’t know how to cook or clean, right?”
        “Right… to an extreme..”
        “Don’t you need someone to do those things for you?”
        “I was thinking about hiring someone… yeah.”
        “Well… How about me?”
        “No way.” I said, trying to remain calm.
        “Why not?”
        “That ain’t a reason.”
        “Sure it is.”
        “I ain’t arguing with you. I’m going to bed. Good night." Pan said, and she stomped off to her room.
        I wondered for a while why she even asked, then shrugged it off. {She probably just wants to help.}

{How could he say no? That really peevs me off. Oh, well. I can always NOT follow orders} I decided that after school I would go to his little house and prove I could do it. Then he wouldn’t –couldn’t- say no. I slept soundly
the rest of the night.

Chap. 3
        The next morning I woke up bright and early, ready for the last day of high school before summer break. I sailed right through Mr. Hordomph and Ms. Verbatim’s class’, not even caring that I had home work from Mr. Hermates. I ran home to my house, gathered all my cleaning supplies, and flew to Trunks’ new home.
        He was a little too modest about it. It had to be one of the smaller homes he had ever really owned, but it was nice enough. It had 4 bedrooms, one of which was an office. The kitchen was huge, and decorated in a nice, calm manner. There were a few doors I didn’t really check, and outside was a gravity room and training court.
        There were a ton of dishes piled into a pile higher than me. I started on the ones at the top, praying to avoid an avalanche. When I finally got done, I cleaned up Trunks’ room and did the laundry. By then it was 5:30 and I had to make dinner. He would be home in half an hour. I made a large meal, being sure not to burn anything. By the time I was done, the table was set, and I was sitting behind a chair, hiding my ki.
        When he walked in, I could tell he was surprised at the smell of real food. When he went and looked, I stood up from behind the chair and leaned on the back of it, giggling.
        “I don’t take no for an answer.” I said, smiling at him, “Enjoy.”
        He just kind of stared at me, shocked. Then down at the food. I just stood there and waited for the reaction that never came. He just started eating.


I was going to die before I became 40 if Pan kept scaring me like that. Her food smelled really good, and I was starving after another hectic day. So I finished off the table in about five minutes, being sure to take my
time so I wouldn’t have to talk to her. She didn’t bother waiting for me, she just chattered about the house, and what she was going to do with it. When I was done, she actually talked to me.
“You were too modest about this house Trunks… it really is beautiful. Just needs a few adjustments to make it truly yours.” She said, her voice nearly killing me. {Little sis checking up on big bro… how sweet. Doesn’t she realize she‘s killing me?}
“You proved yourself, Pan. But really, I don’t want you to be my housekeeper.”
“I’m most certainly not leaving. Don’t worry about it…. I can’t get in the way. Besides, what are you going to eat? It can’ t eat takeout everyday… not even you could afford that. If it makes you feel better, you can call me an employee and pay me. But I ain’t leaving.” She said, as if she owned the place. I was getting really frustrated. {Hell, if she wants to stay, ok. Robert (Trunks’ friend and business partner) said I should make it clear I want a relationship, and with her around, it should be easy.}
“Fine. Have you already moved into a room?” I asked, raising an eyebrow for good measure. {She doesn’t need to know I’m eager for this.}
“Nope. Didn’t know which one you would want me to take.”
“You can have the one next to mine.”
“Do you need help?”
“Nope. I have everything in Capsules I borrowed from Bulma.”
“You didn’t tell her you were staying with me, did you?”
“No.. Why?”
“Because my mother would skin me alive if she knew you were here.”
“Why?” I looked at her. “Oh.”
She blushed. {I really shouldn’t feel this happy. She should blush more often…}
“ I’ll go unpack.”
“Alright. I need to train some.” {Work off all that…} I watched Pan walk up the stairs to her room, then followed to get changed for training.

{Why do you let him get to you that way? He didn’t mean it that way.
really. Just finish moving all your stuff, then you can change and train in the Gravity room. } I unpacked all my junk from the capsules, than put the box in my sock drawer with all my jewelry in it. Then I changed in some sweatpants and a torn up shirt, noticing that I was wearing Trunks pants again. I just shook my head and levitated/walked to the gravity room. I was bored enough… so I decided to try and work out the schedule my grandfather had perfected. 6,000 Hangers (Doing sit-ups while hanging from the ceiling), then 5 blows (doing
attacks against each other to see if you can survive your own attacks.), and then
about 13 laps of the earth. I was always told not to do the blows, but I never really listened anyway.
After doing the hangers, I started the blows, doing a kamehameha and my win energy balls against each other. I stood there, almost panicking, but not quite, as I saw the two hit each other, then double back towards me. I
closed my eyes, waiting for the impact. After a while, I opened an eye, and noticed that didn’t feel anything. I opened another, and realized Trunks was holding me against his chest, protecting me from my own hits. He was nearly collapsing, and his shirt was gone, his pants were torn. And he had cuts all over.
“Trunks! You are such an idiot. Just hold on… you interfering, snarly…”
“If you don’t mind, you can continue insulting me later. Set me down.” Trunks said, trying to cover the weakness in his voice. But I was not fooled, and I took his weight over my shoulders and tried to fly him to the house. But he was too heavy, and soon I had to walk. When I got to the stairs, I flew, being careful not to hit anything when I set
Trunks carefully on the bed.
“Idiot. Stay where you are. I need to get some senzu beans and a wet cloth.”
I went to the bathroom and wet a cloth, then went into my room and grabbed my bag of senzu beans, trying to remember some of my first aid class lessons.
I gave him a bean, but because it doesn’t heal wounds, I had to wash the cuts, so I starting with his head and working down… avoiding some of his male attributes.

  I watched the love of my life take care of my wounds, smirking. She looked concerned and ready to cry… Not a good sign. Next she would get really mad. She was cleaning my chest when I realized I probably had a broken rib. It was also about then that I wondered what she would do if I pulled her on top of me and kissed her.
She looked up at me, tears in her eyes.
“Stupid, snarly, inhuman, idiotic, assholic….” And the list went on. Some of he things she said made me wonder what kind of people she hung out with. She was still working her way lower. I had had enough, so I grabbed her wrist and pulled her on top of me, ignoring my rib. I lowered her head with one of my hands and kissed her, softly, then harder when she started to respond.
Her hands were braced on my chest, and I had my hands cradling her back. When I broke the kiss for air, she just lowered her head into my chest. We were both breathing hard, and I wondered why she wouldn’t look at me.
“Pan?” I asked, softly.
“What?” she asked back, her words muffled against my chest.
“Look at me.” I said, trying to be firm.
“I can’t.” Her words were still muffled, and it was killing me not to see what she was feeling. I lifted her chin so I could see her eyes, and I was shocked at the hunger I saw there. I didn’t know what I truly expected… but tears and hunger don’t really mix. My chest was wet from her silent tears, and one of those tears was caught on her cheek. I kissed the tear off gently, reveling at the taste of salt and water.
Then she kissed me on the mouth, and I wondered how far she would let it go.
The kissing started getting frenzied, and then…

Trunks pulled Pan’s shirt off, turning over so that she was underneath him. He kissed down her neck, then pulled her bra strap down and kissed the place it had once been. She reached up, and started nibbling on his ear and the sensitive place behind it. Trunks shivered. Pan smiled, then started tracing the muscles on his chest with her tongue.

About an hour later….
Pan is sleeping in Trunks’ arms, looking peaceful. Their legs were intertwined. Pan’s head was resting on Trunks’ shoulder, her hair all over them both. He smiled at her one more time before falling asleep, wondering if she ever planned on wrapping his broken rib.

Chap. 4
Another hour later…
Trunks was sticking their clothes in a hamper when Pan woke up, still feeling drowsy. He tossed her a pair of his sweatpants and a tank.
“Good evening sleepy-head. Come on. I want to teach you how to really train.”
“Can we do this another day? I just want to go to sleep…”
“Nope. Up and at ‘em.”
“Always hated that phrase…”
Trunks just laughed and left the room, whistling.

I got dressed into Trunks clothes, wondering why he had given them to me. Then I walked over to the gravity room. Trunks was standing in there, doing some intricate sword moves that made a person dizzy just watching. He wasn’t wearing a shirt, just his favorite pair of sweatpants, and it was making me dizzy watching him for a reason other then the fact that he was dancing with his sword. He didn’t notice I was there until he was finished,but when he did, I coulda swore he face lit up.
“Come on, Pan. Over here.” He said, walking over to a machine that looked like a giant gun with a screen on it. Little did I know it was a speed detector.
“What the hell is that for?” I asked, kind of afraid it actually was a gun.
“Radar. Tells me how fast you are going.” He answered, and I was getting pissed that he was treating me like a little sister.
“That ain’t the whole story. Tell me what we are going to do.”
“Train… duh.”
“Trunks. Tell.”
“I will once I get this retarded thing hooked up. I mean it really is ancient…” And he starts babbling about this stupid thing, not letting me get a word in.
Finally he was finished. He began giving me instructions. The tone of voice he used reminded me he was Vegeta’s son and a prince too.
“Ok. I want you to run around the gravity room. I am putting the thing on 50 g’s, and if I clock you at less then 200 miles per hour, you have to do three laps of the earth, then start over again. Stop when I tell you
too. No flying or levitating. On my mark… get set… GO!” He yelled, before I could even catch my breath. I just started running, not caring that I was probably running holes in the floor from the speed I was trying to go. I noticed after about 100 laps my legs were starting to feel the pull of the gravity, but I ignored it and kept running. At lap 200, my legs were burning. By 300, I was dripping sweat. By 400, I was slowing down.
“STOP.” Trunks yelled, practically in my ear.
“That was ok for a first workout, but I expect over 600 mph next time.” He said, handing me one of the biggest towels I had ever seen. Then he started towards the training court, and I was ready to fall over. {MORE?! Shit. I am so going to kill him} Trunks court was set up with a ton of barbells and weights, plus a few of his mother’s inventions. I walked over to a particularly torturous looking devise when Trunks called me over to a bunch of mats and another radar.
“You have more training to do. If you want to try the Glenougrous later, you can.”
“That is one weird name for a machine.” I muttered, then walked over to where Trunks was, “And what have you planned now?” He smirked evilly at me, and answered, “Can’t handle it? Maybe you weren’t cut out to be a fighter.”
I glared at him, “I am more cut out to be a fighter than you are. Just shut your trap and tell me what to do.”
He looked a little too pleased, and I was ready to shoot my twin balls at him in frustration.
“Ok. I want you to do cartwheels in a circle around the mats. Same deal, if you go less then 200 mph then you have to go around the world. Stop when I tell you to. On your mark… get set… go!” And I went. I was getting really tired by the 200th, ready to kill Trunks by the 300th, and by the 400th I was mad enough to kill. The 500th lap was my last, because Trunks called for me to stop. I was seeing red. I was charging up a kamehameha when he yelled at me.
“Halt.” I powered down, and he continued, “I know this is pissing you off… in fact, you are almost going Super Saiya-jin, but that is not the point. We will spar later. That’s it for today. Come on, let’s get ready for bed.”
I looked at him; surprised at the fact he said I could turn Super Saiya-jin and the double implication of his last words. Then I smoothed my face to a poker mask.
        “Alright. I need to get a shower anyways.” I answered, taking another towel and heading towards one of the bathrooms.
        After my shower I went downstairs to get some hot chocolate. Trunks was there already, making some. I nearly died of a heart attack.
        “Trunks. What the hell are you doing here?” I asked, heart beating faster then it had been earlier.
        “We need to talk. Do your parents even know you are here?” asked Trunks.
        “Do I look like I am nuts? Of course not. I told them I was taking a vacation in Italy for a while.” I answered.
        “Don’t make me answer that. I just wanted to know. Your dad is going to kill me.”
        “Don’t worry about it. What they don’t know won’t hurt you.”
        “Thank you for the vote of confidence.”
        “You are quite welcome.”
        “Here’s some cocoa.” Trunks passed the mug to me, looking like he wanted to say something.
        “Where does that leave us?” He asked suddenly.
        “Is there an us?”
        “I don’t know. Is there?”
        “Why the hell are you asking me?”
        “Cuz I know how I feel.”
        “How do you feel?”
        “All my life.”
        “Good. Aishiteru.” (For those of you Jap illiterate, ‘aishiteru” means “I love you.”
        Trunks got up and walked over to where I was sitting. He leaned back on the table, grabbed my wrists, and brought me to stand between his splayed legs.
Then he kissed me.
        “You swear.” He murmured on my mouth.
        “With all me heart.” I murmured back, pressing a smile onto his mouth.
        “Good.” Trunks broke the kiss.
        “Let’s spend the day together tomorrow.”
        “I have to work.”
        I gave him my most pathetic puppy face.
        “I do own the company.”
        “Alright! We can go to the park and spend the entire day.”
        “I thought we were going to spar.”
        “Not on your life. I don’t want to bind up anymore of your ribs.”
        “Who said you would have to? YOU would have wounds to mend.”
        “Only if you could catch me.”
        “Watch me!”
        And he started chasing me around the house, causing almost everything in the way to break (including the couch), and when he caught me it wasn’t broken ribs we were thinking about anymore.

The next day

I woke up to the sound of a phone ringing. Trunks answered it, sounding really sleepy.
“I’m taking the day off. Just shut up Sicily, and let me get back to sleep.”
I could hear his secretary’s angry tittering before he hung up.
I laughed softly, and I swear he would have jumped out of his pants.. if he was wearing any. I laughed again, and he looked at me like he was very aggravated with me. I just gave him one of my patented innocent looks and started getting dressed.
“What are we planning for today, Mr. I-have-to-deal-with-an-angry-secretery-when-I-get-back-to-the-office?”
I asked, making a little bit of fun.
He ignored my little tease and said, “We are going to go to the park and sit
under a tree on a blanket. Then I am going to show you how romantic I can be without making you take your clothes off, Angel.”
I blushed, pleased, and smiled my most dazzling smile at him.
“Sounds like fun”
So we packed a tiny picnic and went to the park, where Trunks and me just sort of hung out, reading or talking or whatever. I couldn’t remember when we last had so much fun. When we got back to the house, Sicily called again, and now I heard something I did not like. Her voice had turned from whining to seductive in five seconds flat. And Trunks was looking nervous. Definitely not good. When he hung up on her, I watched him, and I guess some of my thoughts showed in my eyes.
“She…. It isn’t what you think… Pan! Don’t look at me that way..” Trunks pleaded with me.
But I had already known. Trunks had been involved with his secretary.
Trunks reached out to me, trying to hug me, but I slipped out of his grasp and ran.
I went to the park, and sat on a bench, crying. Suprisingly, no one was there, so I was left alone with my pain.


She just left me. Pan didn’t even let me explain. Sicily didn’t mean anything to me, even if I went out with her since she worked with me… slept with her longer. I loved Pan… God, but I did. And I had a hard time
admitting it. She disappeared somewhere… where I haven’t got a clue. She hid her ki, so I couldn’t track her that way.
        Well, it didn’t matter. I could find her. I had too.

        I must have cried myself to dehydration before I finally stopped. That may have been the reason I headed straight to the middle of the park, the only place without trees, The Fountain. Just “The Fountain”. No one had ever really named it anything, so that was what it was called. It was a really pretty place, but deserted like the rest of the park.
        I crossed my arms against myself, as if that was going to protect me from the pain, and sat down in the red bed of flowers, be careful not to crush any.

        I was flying over the park when I noticed an orange flag in the middle of a field of red. Pan, finally. {What is she doing in the park?}
        I floated down, not making a sound when I landed on one foot, and hid my ki. {Leave her no time to run away} I walked over to her, trying not to crush any of the flowers. Just before I could take her in my arms, she turned around, looking surprised, but she wasn’t fast enough. I had a hold of her before she even had a chance to run.
        She squirmed and cursed at me in at least six different languages, but I had her. Then she made a growling noise and bit me on the shoulder. Hard! I almost let go of her, but I caught myself in time and tightened my hold
on her. {She’s not going anywhere}
        “Damn you, Trunks! Leave me alone.”
        “Not until you hear me out!”
        “Why should I? You kept the truth from me! That is practically lying!”
        “I was wrong all right?! But that doesn’t mean I don’t love you. I want us to be together!”
        “You… damn you, but you said you loved me! Why didn’t you tell me?”
        She asked this looking at me for the first time, and I noticed that her eye lashes had tears hanging off of them.
        “Because you ran every other girl out of my head. None of them were important enough to remember anyway. Do you promise not to run away so I can let go of you?”
        “And if I don’t?” {Kami, but she had spunk}
        “Then you are going to have to rub the feeling back into my arms.”
        “Then I promise I won’t run away.”
I dropped my arms, but I didn’t step away. I knew she wasn’t really very comfortable because I was so tall, but I was nervous, so I needed some of that as payback.
        She looked up at me with a question in her eyes, and her arms folded across her chest defensively. I looked at her, trying to see what she was feeling, but she still had that poker mask on.
        “Marry me.”
        She looked positively shocked, then angry, then resigned, then really sad, and then joyous. Once she wentthrough the entire feeling circle, she went to joyous and stayed there.
        “Yeah, I will. But you have to promise something.”
        “What?” {God save me, what could she possibly want from me}
        “You have to fire Sicily.”
        “Done deal.”
“Yes!” she yelled and jumped at me, wrapping her arms around my neck.
        I smiled and twirled her until she laughed, knowing we would never be torn apart.


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